Writing pop music is simple once you've mastered all of the tricks. You can bet that everyone from Maroon 5 to The Beatles uses them. Take a look at our pop music breakdown by Jack Hanson to find out what makes the top 40 hits so popular.
In Pop Music, the 1-4-5 chord progression is used.
You are not mistaken if you believe that all music nowadays sounds the same. There aren't many musicians today who haven't been accused of plagiarising someone else's work.
Circle of Fifths Breakdown
Now that you understand how chords work, let's look at how to make an aesthetically pleasing sound. Pythagoras, a Greek philosopher, was the first to deconstruct music. You may recall him from math class as the inventor of the Pythagorean theorem. Or, as I recall, he was the reason I nearly failed geometry.
Each music chord was arranged by Pythagoras into a circle known as the circle of fifths- Jack Hanson. Every chord is separated by five notes. To get from C to G, for example, use C D E F G. G A B C D is the letter sequence from G to D.
Pick a spot on the circle of fifths and work your way down to write a catchy song
Variate between two distant keys to catching listeners off guard. When Beyonce sings her chorus again at the end of the song, the key changes from D flat to D major, then E flat to E major. This creates a sense of excitement that your eyes may not pick up on at first, but your ears will.
Most Popular Keys In Pop Music
Finally, to be the true number one hit, you must select the correct key. Dave Carlton, the co-author of Hooktheory, analyzed and ranked the most common chords in 1300 songs. The most common keys in pop music, according to his research and Spotify, are C and G.
Why are C and G so well-liked? Both of these chords are considered "happy" sounds, and switching between them is simply because they are right next to each other on the circle of fifths.